"There's No Place Like the Windward Side"- The Windward Orchid Society Orchid Spring Show - March 20-22, 2020
December brings us into our Hawaiian winter. The days are at their shortest at this time, combined with the almost constant rainfall, so we must try to keep our orchids dry. Provide the proper media that will dry quickly and have lots or air space for the roots. Keep them in smaller pots, so the media dries faster. Also, provide adequate air circulation and avoid over-crowding your orchids. Clay or cement pots will dry faster than plastic. Hanging your pots or mounting your orchids on wood or in baskets is the best way to avoid over-watering your orchids.
From now until February, we want to keep our Hono Hono dry and stop fertilizing to promote leaf drop and dormancy. Buds should begin to emerge in February, and once you know that they are flowers buds, you can begin watering and fertilizing them again.
I will use this column to address many of the common questions I receive during the “Orchid Doctor” sessions. A common one is; How do I avoid having ants, cockroaches, centipedes, or other unwanted critters in my orchid pots. A quick solution would be to spray them with the Bayer 3 n 1. This should take care of most things. But the main cause of this problem is that your orchid needs repotting. In a couple of years after potting, your media will break down. When this happens, roots will begin to die, the bark will become mushy or powdery, and often air pockets will form. This provides the proper environment for the nesting of these critters. As a reminder, note repotting dates on the back of your orchid label.
If you didn’t get enough orchids at the auction night, you have another great opportunity to increase your collection by coming to the Christmas Luncheon. We will be raffling for only a dollar a ticket, a crazy amount of orchids from the best nurseries in the state. Can’t make it? You can always pay someone to purchase tickets for you!
On April 24, 2019, UH Manoa Hamilton Library held a presentation entitled, “Journey Through the Natural Sciences in Hamilton Library’s Rare Book Collection”.
Attendees were able to look through several rare books featuring beautifully illustrated plates of orchids, birds and other animals.
One of the presenters, Sheron Harwood, WOS President, captivated the audience with her knowledge of orchid history, diversity and culture.
The books from this rare collection dated from as early as 1587!
Of particular interest was a large, bound volume published from 1837-1843, The Orchidaceae of Mexico & Guatamala.
You can see from the picture of the Cattleya Skinneri with Sheron’s hand in it, just how immense this book was.
Other pictures are a Cycnoches Egertonianum, unusual in that it has male and female flowers and a Stanhopea Martiana, unique because the flower spikes grow down from the bottom.
The detail and accuracy of these hand-drawn prints were amazing, right down to bug bites on the stems.
~ Dawn Bonak
I bet if I do everything just right, I can get that daggum orchid flower to come out of that plant. I know it’s in there because I’d seen it before. It was a sweet little thing that made me smile to look at it.
OK, let’s see here. Now, Scot says what you need to pay attention to is:
#1- Don’t leave your plant soaking in water all day. It’s got to dry quick or the roots will rot.
There are tricks for that. You put the plant in a pot with stuff like Styrofoam (not kiddin’) for the bottom and around the sides. Then, add some bark or gravel to take up the space in the middle of the pot and get that plant in there all nice and snug, so it won’t wobble around. Get it? This stuff’s not gonna hold water very long at all.
And, the most important thing is to use a little-bitty pot. That way, there’s no way for water to accumulate. If that plant is still wobbly, put a stake next to a stem and twist-tie them together. If the plant wants to fall over, put that little pot into an empty bigger pot.
#2-Blah, blah, blah…
That’s a lot of words.
Don’t you wish someone can just show you how to do this?
Well, you are in luck.
Go watch Scot, or another orchid sage, in person at a Windward Orchid Society Saturday Workshop at Dot’s house. It’s better than a YouTube video because you can ask questions and even bring your own plant and fix it up under expert orchid tutelage.
And bonus, bring a yummy dish to share and enjoy a potluck lunch and talking story after the workshop. This is more fun than reading about orchid care…really.
Watch for more details about these workshops in your Windward Orchid Society newsletter.
Of course you need to sign up and be a member to get our newsletters.
Here’s what happens at Dot’s Workshop:
The Windward Orchid Society meets at 7:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of every month at the King Intermediate School Cafeteria, located at 46-155 Kamehameha Hwy. in Kaneohe.
Become a member
Join the Windward Orchid Society to help promote, educate and show an appreciation of one of the most beautiful and exotic of all plants. The Orchid.